Seatrials were completed by Bollinger Shipyards, Inc., Lockport, La., on the first of four 145.5-ft. utility vessels under contract for Guilbeau Marine, Inc., Cut Off, La. Delivery of the Ms. Caroline was August 24, 2001, and the second boat, Mr. Chad is scheduled for delivery in late September 2001. The boats are named in honor of Caroline Guilbeau, granddaughter of owner Anthony "Noonie" Guilbeau, Jr. and Chad Guilbeau, office manager of the company.
"Older utility boats in the 110 to 125 ft. range are becoming obsolete," said Chad Guilbeau
, "and this new Bollinger 145 ft. design is ideal for working the shallower waters of the Gulf of Mexico Outer Continental Shelf because of their size, versatility and maneuverability. Both of these boats are scheduled to go on production support projects right after delivery." Scott Theriot, executive vice-president, new construction of Bollinger said, "With forty-two dry-docks servicing a wide variety of vessels, our technical people meet new challenges every day by solving unusual repair, conversion and retrofits with innovative solutions. Their contact with boat owners, captains and crews provides our naval architects and marine engineers with direct knowledge of operations and ways to improve future designs. This dialog often produces ideas that will make boats more user-friendly and safer while providing optimum vessel and bottom line performance. Much of that input is synthesized into the 145 utility design. That, and its under 100 grt, are other reasons for its wide acceptance by many operators."
Each of the Guilbeau boats will be 145.5 ft. long, with a 36-ft. beam and 11.5-ft. maximum draft. Each will be powered by two Cummins DTA-38MO diesel engines developing a total of 1,500 hp. They will drive two Bollinger stainless steel propellers through Twin Disc MG5301 reverse/reduction gears with a ratio of 4.96:1. Steering will be provided by a Jastram/Hydraquip system and aided by a Schottel STT110 bow thruster driven by a Cummins diesel engine. Two Quincy air compressors will start the engines of each boat. The engines will be channel cooled and monitored by a Marine One alarm system. Each boat will be able to carry 50,000 gallons of liquid drilling muds, 32,000 gallons of fuel, 500 gallons of oil and 15,000 gallons of potable water. The boats will be able to accommodate up to 16 persons and their spaces will be heated and cooled by 10 tons of Crane air conditioning. Guilbeau Marine, Inc., has been operating in the Gulf of Mexico for over 40 years. The company currently owns three-125 ft. crew boats, two-125 ft. utility boats and one-145 ft. utility boat.